We often hear the term ‘job satisfaction’ being used to describe how a person gauges his/her nature of work. Further, in our day-to-day lives, we often express job satisfaction in terms of how good or bad we feel about our work lives. Interestingly, job satisfaction is also a metric used by organizations to determine employees’ perceptions when they’re at the office.
What is Job Satisfaction?
Job satisfaction cannot be quantified by a numerical value, but it is a metric that works well to determine an individual’s positive emotional response towards their job. Organizations around the world are devising ways to measure this, and one of the most effective means is to get feedback from employees themselves.
An individual’s response to his/her job cannot be the same as another’s. Job satisfaction varies from person to person, even if they happen to be at the same workplace and under identical working conditions. Due to the ambiguous nature of this metric, there needs to be a multi-dimensional approach to understanding employees’ work satisfaction.
What factors determine employees’ satisfaction levels?
Businesses have determined quite a few variables that would enable them to understand how job satisfaction can be calculated. These focus primarily on the importance of employee satisfaction and encompass a variety of neutral elements that will help employers empathize with their employees better.
1. How much does the company care about its employees?
A significant factor that ensures work satisfaction relates to employees knowing how much the company cares about them. For starters, it isn’t enough for employers to express that they care. This must be showcased to the employee from time to time.
Frequent communication in the form of paid incentives, rewards, or informal recognition will undoubtedly boost the employees’ morale and make them feel better about working for the company.
Well-renowned firms around the world known for reporting high levels of work satisfaction often feature employee happiness and satisfaction stories as part of their communication strategy.
2. How often do employees get promoted?
An individual who engages in the same set of duties for a long duration might not end up happy with his/her work life. To feel valued and noticed for their efforts, employees seek promotions as a form of incentive to stay in the company. In today’s fast-paced world, if employees don’t sense any appreciation for their work, they don’t hesitate to seek better opportunities.
As a general rule, it is best to keep the interval between promotions short of the average tenure of the employee. While it may not be possible for each staff to be promoted at the same pace, employees should at least be given a chance to explore other roles within the organization. When employees feel that they can apply their skills in distinct spheres of work, they tend to feel a higher sense of job satisfaction.
In addition to this, companies should arrange thorough promotion policies and also ensure that every employee is aware of these so that their expectations are kept in check.
3. Is there a scope for two-way communication and feedback?
Employers have the freedom to offer regular, constructive feedback to employees regarding their performance or their scope for growth. In addition to this, positive reinforcements can go a long way in upholding morale.
Companies should also grant employees the freedom to share their opinions or insights on the future of the company. They must not feel threatened to share details regarding any issue within the organization. This can be facilitated by a scheduled employee feedback culture where staff members express their views with their managers, HR personnel, or senior management.
4. Do employees engage in mutual respect for one another?
An employee would surely feel heavily dissatisfied at an organization that undermines or disrespects. Some fear to bring up any issue to the senior management altogether due to the assumption that they may come across as weak if they cannot handle work pressures. In such a scenario, it becomes the organization’s responsibility to step in and welcome the opportunity to express. A factor like ‘mutual respect’ is not something that is easily understood. The senior management or managers should engage in individual conversations with each employee or even opt for anonymous feedback sessions so that they can collect necessary information and improve the employee experience in this front.
5. How much importance is given to work-life balance?
Numerous firms try to enforce high performance, and the execution of the same can border on a toxic work culture. It is fine for companies to have high targets and motivate employees to meet them.
At the same time, companies mustn’t become so overly ambitious that they do not sense whether or not employees are getting the appropriate work-life balance. When employees know that their companies do not prioritize work over personal well-being, they feel more satisfied in being part of an ecosystem that cares for them.
Work-life balance can be seen in the form of paid time off, flexible working benefits, as well as mandatory work-from-home days. Enterprises should realize that the happier and more relaxed a person is, the greater they can contribute to their role.
6. The relationship between employees and their reporting heads
A majority of people feel trapped and discontent in their jobs mainly due to the relationship they share with their bosses. The number one reason why professionals even self-terminate their contracts is their dissatisfaction with reporting heads. Companies lose a lot of valuable employees merely because they fail to allow them to discuss their managers. Once again, fear gets the better of them, and they feel that quitting is the right option than to risk losing their job.
The best way to combat this is to conduct targeted work satisfaction surveys, especially on a team-by-team basis. Assigning managers and employees that get along well will surely go a long way in boosting the overall productivity of the company.
7. Are company policies fair and inclusive?
Any employee who faces workplace discrimination based on age, gender, background, or disability would feel uncomfortable working at such an organization. Aside from being the right thing to do, diversity and inclusion are key things that will bring about a positive impact on the business’ bottom line. In today’s world, a company’s culture and work environment are critical factors that people take into consideration, and a business that invests in fairness and inclusivity will be able to lead in terms of employee satisfaction.
Every person across the organization deserves a sense of belonging. Remember that such a practice will reveal to employers the importance of employee satisfaction.
8. Does the employee’s job give them a chance to be creative?
Not every company can place the same level of regard for creativity. At the same time, companies must also understand that a lack of any creative outlet for employees would make them feel restricted in their capabilities.
Creativity can be encouraged by making the organization more innovation-friendly. So, employers must give employees a chance to express their ideas and showcase inspiration in their work. Doing so will prevent the employee from feeling unheard or under-valued within the organization.
9. How secure do the employees feel about their job?
As of 2020, companies are using automation technology as a replacement for human intuition to determine an employee’s performance. Employers must take the responsibility of informing employees how their roles will change over the years and how they can be prepared for the same. When it comes to assuring job security, open and clear communication is key amongst all levels of the organization.
These factors will enable companies to ensure that employees feel a sense of work satisfaction in their roles. In addition to this, they should pay attention to other factors such as compensation, amenities at the office, benefits, and more.
TalenX is a talent selection platform that integrates Psychological Science and Analytics to bring predictive levels of a great job fit. The organization helps companies hire, grow, and retain top talents with I/O technology.
Why is job satisfaction important?
There is much debate regarding the importance of job satisfaction and why companies should pay special attention to it. First and foremost, employers must understand that people are most productive when they have a favourable environment that allows them to perform to the best of their abilities.
When such a vibe reigns across their workplace, in addition to the factors mentioned above, employers will no longer have to push employees to contribute harder. When given the right opportunities to flourish, any talented and capable employee will perform well without being asked to do so.
With that said, here are some reasons that round up the importance of employee satisfaction –
1. Satisfied employees will give you satisfied customers
If your company handles direct customer interactions, it helps to consider the importance of job satisfaction as a crucial factor for growth. If your employees are demotivated or miserable at work, likely, this unenthusiastic nature could slowly seep into their interactions with clients. Even if the company does not directly engage with customers, poor performance will show through in some aspect or another, which will lead to clients feeling less than satisfied with your services.
Every organization should realize that their workforce is what helps them achieve their targets on time and fruitfully. A business that reports higher job satisfaction will undoubtedly allow itself to gain more profits.
2. Best way to improve referrals
To keep it straight, a dissatisfied employee would never suggest his/her friend to join the same company. Because employee recommendations and referrals constitute a large chunk of the current mode of recruitment, employee satisfaction can go a long way in ensuring that you keep the applications coming. On the other hand, when an employee is completely satisfied with their capacity, they wouldn’t think twice before recommending their peers, thereby improving your chances of bringing in the right talent.
3. Reduction in voluntary turnover
A voluntary turnover takes place when employees willingly leave their positions, which also makes it expensive for firms to lookout for new talent and recruit them. The company also loses out on people that they have taken the time and effort to carefully train over the years.
Your employees might also possess a set of competencies that could prove disadvantageous to you once they join another organization. If job satisfaction is taken care of, employees will feel at peace with their positions and won’t hound a reason to quit.
4. Bring down HR expenses
The majority of expenses that are taken up by the HR lies in handling dissatisfied employees. Expenditures towards targeted surveys and focused career assistance towards employees with low work satisfaction can significantly increase the financial burden to the company. In addition to this, voluntary turnovers can bring up the rehiring and retraining cost for every employee that leaves.
Companies can keep all of these in check if they ensure that employees have a good working environment for them to flourish in. Interestingly, when employees feel safe and satisfied, the company will undoubtedly witness higher sales, reduced costs, as well as a strong bottom line.
When an employee feels valued and appreciated at work, they would want to showcase the same appreciation towards the organization. An employee can always tell if the organization has their best interests at heart, and once they sense that, they voluntarily help the company further its mission and goals.
Workers begin to take more initiatives because they feel their interests getting aligned with those of the company. In the long-term, this will help organizations achieve more goodwill, as employees will speak highly of the firm that granted them utmost job satisfaction while also allowing them to grow.
These are just a few of the reasons that underline the importance of employee satisfaction. When job satisfaction is made a priority, it helps the company stay ahead of the curve and avoid issues that could hinder growth in the long-term. If a company does not have any initiatives catering to work satisfaction yet, they must work on the same at the earliest.
How to boost employee job satisfaction?
Most times, when employers think of how they can keep employees satisfied, they only take pay and benefits into consideration. Interestingly, even employees with a good-enough salary can report demotivation with their jobs. This only points to an important understanding – several other factors need to be undertaken by employers to boost employee satisfaction. Here are some of the most common ways –
1. Respectful treatment
Regardless of how many benefits a company churns out for its employees, any disrespectful treatment will only gather resentment from employees. It is simply human nature to feel valued and respected, and when employees can attain that at their place of work, they strive to give their best and commit to working hard to achieve company objectives, while also reporting a higher sense of work satisfaction.
2. Job Security
The lack of job security can make any employee feel anxious about working for a certain organization. When staff are not informed about the various undertakings and functions of the organization, it may render them disconnected and dissatisfied. The best way to offer a heightened sense of job security amongst employees is to incorporate honest and clear communication across all levels of the organization.
3. Good working environment
No employee can thrive under toxic conditions, and this extends to the atmosphere at the place of work as well. Employers must put in their effort to ensure that their offices are free from stress, harassment, unethical practices, discrimination, and moral issues. Even if such incidents do crop up, employees should feel confident in reporting the same to the senior management without fearing any repercussions.
4. Career growth
Everyone prefers to look towards the future and make a plan for their lives. Similarly, employees would also appreciate it when they see the diverse opportunities for growth within the organization. This prevents workers from feeling stuck in a job and gives them more space to rise in their roles as well.
Today, it is just as important for employees to like their workplace as it is for employers to feel good about an employee’s performance. Organizations do not have to go above and beyond their capabilities to introduce ways to ensure job satisfaction. In addition to good pay and benefits, employees consider respectful treatment and opportunities for growth as the two most essential factors that give them work satisfaction. If companies can pay heed to just this, they create a more stable and profitable future for the entire organization.
TalenX is a company that utilizes human science and data to understand each individual’s expectations from their workplace. It then uses these insights to find the perfect job fit for them. Visit the TalenX official website to know more about talent acquisition and management.